Antique Victorian Mourning Cross
This antique Victorian mourning cross necklace is truly one of the most amazing pieces of mourning jewellery I´ve procured. The beads and cross are composed of French jet (black glass which is used to simulate jet. It was used in mourning jewelry throughout the 19th century.). The ethereal cross rests in a bed of roses and floats from from a lovely chain which appears to be French jet glass. The cross and beads are in good antique condition with typical signs of age related wear. There are several surface scratches on the cross however they do not detract from the overall beauty of this outstanding piece.
The cross is quite substantial with a weight of approximately 34 grams
Total necklace length is 36 inches and the cross measures 2" x 3.20"
The beads appear secure, however due to aging it may be helpful to professionally restring for additional support - or intertwine a silk or velvet ribbon along with them.
In 1861 Prince Albert passed away after 21 years of marriage to Queen Victoria of England. The Queen fell into mourning that lasted until her death in 1901. She declared that her court will wear only mourning attire for the next three years. Hence the origin of creating jewelry from Whitby jet because of its black color. Jet is a hard, coal-like variety of lignite. Its color is velvety black it has a brilliant luster and is resinous. It was mined off the cliff sides of Whitby England to the point that the cliffs became endangered. Substitutions were then sought and the French created an alternative for Whitby jet using black glass and this is known as French jet.